Sunday, April 28, 2013

Profile Spotlight: Jaime Lefkowitz of 'Eclectic'

The artsy-bohemian senior at New Paltz University, Jaime Lefkowitz, opens up about her jewelry line, “Eclectic.” Currently majoring in Art Education and minoring in Art History with a concentration in Ceramics, she is immersed in a creative energy that is as distinct as her signature yarn and metal based pieces.

When did you first get started creating jewelry?
The first time was in 2010, when I took my first metals class. My professor was actually really into creating pretty brooches, and we had the chance to look at his work. That inspired me to make beautiful jewelry. Usually in the metal classes that are taken here, it’s not necessarily jewelry that you make, but he allowed us to make that option. So I went that route, and started to make jewelry.

Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
I would definitely say all the magazines that I subscribe to; Glamour, Marie Claire, People, Vogue, InStyle, and Real Simple.

How often do you design?
I design everyday. I’m always thinking of new things. It can be when I shower, when I’m outside, wherever I am. I sketch the designs before. And if I don’t have my sketchpad, I always write notes down in my phone. I have an idea column and I write down my everything and go back to it.

Where do you shop for jewelry?
I like Lord & Taylor, Urban Outfitters, Zara, Century 21, and definitely thrift stores. We have a really big Salvation Army that I go and donate to in New Paltz.

Do you have a signature piece?
Long, hooped yarn necklaces. Right now, I’m really into mixing fiber and yarn with metals, creating kind of like a bohemian feel. I made two of those pieces to experiment with yarn, metal, and brass. I want to try to make bracelets like those now.

Where do you source materials?
Fabric stores, little businesses and boutiques around New Paltz, where I like to buy metals and accessories. 

Your creative work space is…
I make them in the studio at school using the studio’s equipment. Sometimes I don’t even need the studio, depending on the design. I can just make the pieces when I am at home.

What are your plans for selling in the future?
I don’t currently sell, but I do I think I would start online, such as Etsy and see how it goes. Right now I have about ten pieces; I want to start making more before selling.

Have you brainstormed any ideas for upcoming pieces?
Those midi knuckle rings that are really in right now!

Photo Credits: Jaime Lefkowitz

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Profile Spotlight: Ronnetta J. Coleman of 'Lovely Bound'

"I love to create. Don't call me a jewelry designer, call me a creator of beautiful things," said Ronnetta J. Coleman, the founder and creator of Lovely Bound. The serendipitous idea of designing jewelry came to Coleman two years ago, when she was walking down the street with a friend. The idea struck like a bolt of lightning. Working in a different field at the time, she spontaneously added jewelry design into her life. And just like that, Lovely Bound was born. With no formal training in the field, Coleman took learning into her own hands. 

Electric wire, fresh water pearls, crystals, lace and even tape measures are materials she sources in the creation of bracelets, necklaces, and earrings among others. Her tape measure bracelets were a result of a quiet Sunday evening, and having no other materials on hand. Just a few metal hole punches, clasps, and jump rings turned out to be genius; and one of her best selling items! Two of Coleman's pieces, 'Victoria' and 'Autumn', using pearls and blue beads, respectively, have been featured into the "New Works" Exhibition at The Fashion Institute of Technology, displayed in the President's office.

Currently sold on websites, Lovely Bound is foreseeing opportunities to sell in China. As far as long term goals? Coleman hopes to be successful, not worrying about becoming famous, just the satisfactory of creating wonderful ideas and bringing them to life. 

Photo credits: Own.
Last four photos: Ronnetta J. Coleman.